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  Yoga  
[Yoga Home][Postures][Breathing][HolisticOnline Home][Meditation][Prayer]
 

The Spinal Roll or Rocking Exercise

This is an excellent exercise to overcome the drowsiness and stiffness that one feels on waking in the morning. As you do this exercise, you will feel an invigorating sensation from your vertebrae getting a good massage. It will limber up your spine and keep it in a flexible and youthful condition. It is invaluable for those who are using yoga to dodge old age. It will also help you to sleep soundly. Thus, it is a good prescription for insomnia.

You may feel a little clumsy and awkward the first day when you do this exercise. Some people feel like losing their balance and falling down. In a few days you will feel accustomed to the rocking action and will start enjoying it. At that time you can combine rocking with deep breathing. Inhale while rocking backwards and exhale while returning forward.

spinal_rock.GIF (10738 bytes)

Technique

  1. Sit down at the end of the exercise pad to make sure that your back will not hit the hard floor. Draw up your knees, and bend your head down. Put your hands under your knees. You can join your hands or not depending on what is easy on you.
  2. Keeping your spine rounded, gently swing back and forth, imitating the swinging motion of a rocking chair. Don’t straighten your spine as you will roll backward or you will find yourself lying flat on your back, unable to swing forward again. Don't roll back too far on your neck. Don’t try doing the rocking exercise too slowly either. Imagine you are a rocking chair in motion. Feel for the massaging action on your spine. Enjoy the fun.

Hint:

Straighten your knees just as you swing backward and then immediately bend them again as you swing forward. Don’t pause after you have swung back but simply continue the to-and-fro movement. Otherwise you may get ‘stuck.’

Time:

Do this exercise four or six times, then lie down to relax until your breath returns to normal again. Take a few deep breaths while still lying on the floor.

Benefits

  1. Makes the spine more flexible and youthful.
  2. Massages all the vertebrae in the neck and spine.
  3. If done in the morning it helps to overcome the drowsiness and stiffness that people often feel on waking up.
  4. It's also very beneficial just before sleep.
  5. The massaging action on the spine tends to relax the whole nervous system and establishes a better connection between the central nervous system and the rest of the body.

[Go To: The Stomach Lift, Abdominal Lift (Uddyiana Bandha)]

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